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August 18, 2019

Indictment deferred in illegal allotment case against Kamal, others


August 18, 2019

An accountability court on Saturday adjourned the indictment of former mayor and Pak Sarzameen Party chief Mustafa Kamal, among others, in an illegal allotment case.

The court has now fixed September to frame charges against the accused persons.

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) had filed a reference against Kamal, DJ Builders’ Muhammad Dawood, Muhammad Yaqoob, Muhammad Irfan and Muhammad Rafiq, government officers Fazlur Rehman, Iftikhar Kaimkhani, Mumtaz Haider, Syed Nishat Ali and Nazeer Zardari.

According to the anti-graft watchdog, the suspects in connivance sold off a plot of over 6,000 square yards owned by the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation in the upscale Clifton neighborhood to a private builder to make up a high-rise.

The plot, measuring over 6,632 sq yds, situated between Abdullah Shah Ghazi shrine and Bagh Ibn-e-Qasim, was supposed to be given to sea-shell hawkers to set up stalls, according to NAB; however, it was illegally sold to builders at a below-the-market price.

NAB maintained that Kamal approved the commercial status of the plot after which it was sold to DJ Builders which later sold it. It added that the price of the plot was shown to be Rs260 million while it valued more than Rs2.5 billion.

It said that first the plot was divided into 198 stalls, to be handed over to hawkers, but the plan was not implementation. Later in 2007, the plot was amalgamated into one and sold off to DJ Builders. In 2014, the plot was sold to another private party, which started work on it.

NAB maintained that the whole process was illegal as neither the status of the plot could be changed nor a building higher than one-storey could be built on it. It added that the suspects using their influence caused a huge loss to the national exchequer.

During the hearing, the court expressed its displeasure over the absence of the investigation officer of the case and an accused, Nazeer Zardari. The judge ordered them to ensure their presence at the next hearing.

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